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The Scene is in business

The popularity of The Scene at Cleveland Place during the first few weeks of opening has been proven by the queues of local residents out the doors at times, with both the cinema and the new Nando’s and Pizza Express restaurants doing a roaring trade.

But it’s not just those of us lucky enough to have the time to enjoy what’s on offer during our leisure time who are thanking our lucky stars, there are around 100 local people employed by the cinema and the two restaurants. And there are still three more restaurants to come! 

All of the staff who took up the positions at Empire are residents of the borough, with 35 local people in all gaining employment as a result of the cinema coming to Waltham Forest. It has also been revealed that the vast majority of employees at the two restaurants are also predominantly borough residents.

Of the 22 staff employed by Pizza Express, 18 live in the borough, while at Nando’s 80 per cent of the current 50 strong team are local residents. Olga Mikulich from Leytonstone has taken up one of the positions at the new Pizza Express.

“I’m really happy to get this job,” she said. “It’s so convenient for me as it is only 12 minutes on the bus and I can drop my son off on the way. It looks so good here now that the cinema and restaurants are open and we have been very busy.”

The Council’s Business, Employment and Skills Team have worked closely with both restaurants to help secure these local jobs for local people. Councillor Clare Coghill, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and High Streets, said, “While both Nando’s and Pizza Express have their own online portals, the Council’s joint partnership network with Job Centre Plus has helped make local residents aware of the opportunities.

“Information on these vacancies was also made available on the Council’s Jobs Bus which has helped hundreds of local residents find work from various locations across the borough. I’m pleased we’re playing our part and wish Olga and the scores of other local people who have secured employment at The Scene all the best.”

The three other restaurants at The Scene are due to open in the New Year, with Caribbean outlet Turtle Bay scheduled to start serving in January. The 121 new homes are already being marketed and a shared ownership (part buy, part rent) scheme allows people with a gross household income of up to £66,000 per annum to purchase the one and two bedroom apartments, and those earning £80,000 per annum to purchase a three bed apartment.

Photo: Olga Mikulich working at the new Pizza Express restaurant at The Scene at Cleveland Place.

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